Middletown, PA – Penn State Harrisburg Men's Basketball rallied back from 22-point first half deficit to defeat CAC foe Southern Virginia. The Lions got an outstanding performance from Ibn-Haneef Nelson who scored 17 points. After some defensive adjustments, the Blue & White ended the first half on a 28-7 run to pull them within one going into halftime. The Lions would use that momentum to defeat the Knights.
Penn State Harrisburg 74 vs Southern Virginia 68
Penn State Harrisburg Starters:
Nelson, Luethke, Thomas, Alliyu, Williams
Southern Virginia Starters:
Prisbrey, Winslow, Johnson, Rumbaugh, Thornton
Penn State Harrisburg (4-1, 1-1 CAC)
Southern Virginia: (3-2, 0-1 CAC)
Inside The Stats:
Field Goals: Penn State Harrisburg (24-57) vs. Southern Virginia (30-58)
Assists: Harrisburg (9) vs. Southern Virginia (6)
Turnovers: Harrisburg (11) vs. Southern Virginia (17)
Rebounds: Harrisburg (32) vs. Southern Virginia (38)
How it happened:
Penn State Harrisburg started slow struggling to hit shots early, while the Knights took advantage building a 30-8 lead. After a full timeout, Coach Friday and his staff made some adjustments and began to full court press the Knights. The constant pressure broke up the Knights offensive rhythm and created easy scoring opportunities. Ibn-Haneef Nelson (9 Points) and Brandon Coleman (8 Points) took advantage leading the Lions back in a hurry. With 1:29 remaining in the half, Coleman drove to the basket drew the foul and finished the layup to cut the deficit to two.
The Lions kept their momentum going entering the second half, and when Anthony Bennett Jr. completed a three-point-play giving Harrisburg the lead, the Lions never looked back. The Lions built a 10-point lead of their own with the help of big men Kahlil Williams, Austin Chimuma, and Gbolahan Alliyu. The Lions would fight off one final run by the Knights, winning 74-68.
Penn State Harrisburg:
Nelson – 17 points, 2 steals, 7-9 FG
Chimuma – 12 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist
Bennett Jr. – 12 points, 4 rebounds, 2 steals, 1 assist
Head Coach Don Friday said afterwards, "Coming off a 5 games in 11 days sandwiched around the holiday, I'm proud of our kids and the way they've hung together. Southern Virginia came into our gym today and punched us square in the mouth. What is very encouraginig is the way our kids stayed in the moment, and focused on winning the small battles. Taking care of the ball, pressuring the passers, and doing it one possession at a time. I'm extremely happy for the young men here in our locker room. We'll get right back to work tomorrow as we set our sights on Frostburg State, and get back to practicing the Penn State Harrisburg way."
The Lions will travel to face off against the Frostburg St. Bobcats on Wednesday November 29th following the women's game. Tip-off is at 8pm.